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Working toward an equitable California never stops

Although state leaders already enacted a 2021-22 state budget, there is still room to advance equitable policies and support Californians. As California faces both better-than-expected revenues and continued devastation from the pandemic, we must recognize that this is proof of inequality and an opportunity to do better. Policymakers must continue to prioritize investments that truly help every Californian thrive.

At the Budget Center, we know that the budget cycle is cyclical and the work never stops. Here are three opportunities before policymakers to make California a more equitable place to live.

  • Extend Support for California Renters: Many renters with low incomes will still be struggling after the current eviction moratorium expires on September 30 and may need additional housing support, given that many faced unaffordable rents even before the pandemic. Plus, a full jobs recovery may take many more months. State leaders should be prepared to further extend the moratorium and rental support to ensure struggling renters keep their homes.
  • Provide Additional Cash Support: Californians who are undocumented were excluded from thousands of dollars in federal cash payments aimed to help families weather the pandemic. Policymakers should build upon the Golden State Stimulus by providing a larger California Earned Income Tax Credit (CalEITC) to undocumented Californians to reduce income inequities and address federal exclusions that harm families and communities.
  • Eliminate Barriers to Medi-Cal: By extending Medi-Cal eligibility for undocumented Californians age 26 to 49 and thereby putting an end to racist and exclusionary policies that block Californians from accessing vital health services, policymakers can ensure all Californians have the opportunity to be healthy and thrive.
This article was released by the California Budget & Policy Center.